Projections of events and propositions in Japanese: A case study of Koto-nominalized clauses in causal relations

Yurie Hara, Youngju Kim, Hiromu Sakai, Sanae Tamura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This paper proposes a syntax and semantics of nominalized clauses headed by koto in Japanese. We argue that the koto-nominalized clause can denote either a concrete event or an abstract proposition. Koto serves as a maximality operator for clauses as well as NPs. The sentential koto is syntactically ambiguous depending on the structure with which koto merges. Finally, our analysis also has a strong implication for the linguistic distinction between physical causation and causal judgment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)262-288
Number of pages27
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Jul 2



  • Causation
  • Event semantics
  • Kind
  • Maximality
  • Nominalization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

Cite this